This is a post for WordPress geeks and blog nerds. In a moment I’ll explain why I switched from the Penscratch theme to the Baskerville theme. But first! A little context.
I’ve recently gotten into the Two People Podcast, hosted by Blaine Lay and Chris Payne. (Even if you don’t live in Richmond, you should listen to it, because it’s so good.)
Last week I listened to #7, the Brian McDaniel episode. I learned about the Tumblr blog Brian started years ago called Dirty Richmond. By Brian’s description, I could tell the Dirty Richmond blog had an in-the-moment, lighthearted, curated-but-not-too-forced quality. It allowed photographs to tell stories.
The more I looked into Tumblr, the more I thought it might be a better fit for my stage of life. When I’m home, I’m usually chasing my two sons around. There are so many moments of inspiration and delight I want to document, but I don’t have time to write an essay. Reasons being:
- I’m in the of middle chasing my boys around.
- I already have a looooong list of essays I want to write about–ya know, topics like: Wait. You’re Not Obsessed With My Children?, Why Won’t My Children Eat?, An Argument for Messy Houses, How to Start a Dubiously Successful Backyard Garden, and What Are You Going to Do With an English Major? Take Over the World…
- By the time the boys are in bed and I sit down to write an essay, I either fall asleep or zone out watching whatever Bryce has on TV.
When I started Rockville Diaries in 2014, I chose Penscratch as my theme because I loved its clean, responsive, minimalist quality. It’s a really nice theme. I fully intended to write a lot of essays. Or, let’s shoot lower. I fully intended to write a lot of blog posts, however long or short. Over time, though, I wrote fewer and fewer posts. (If you look at my Archives, you’ll see what I mean.) Maybe Tumblr would free me to up to be a little more spontaneous and quick with my blogging.
Before I made the switch from WordPress to Tumblr, I decided to explore other WordPress themes. There are so many things I love about WordPress. I didn’t really want to leave. In particular, I like how WordPress allows you to keep things very simple, or you can easily expand your site for ecommerce. (Because, ya know, one day I’m going to get around to writing my series of children’s books about our dog, Sneaky Ragland.) Plus, it’s so easy to switch from one WordPress theme to another.
- Supported nine post formats–including links, quotes, and audio player. Themes that support a variety of post formats can give a site more visual interest, make it obvious to the reader what they’re clicking, encourage short-form posts, and enable easy content curation. For example, I can use the “link” post format to highlight something a friend has written and encourage people to visit her site.
- Called out that it’s a theme for hoarders. Anders Norén, you had me at “hoarders.” I love to collect wonderful things and document moments. I want my blog to remind me of the big Rubbermaid container in the boys’ room that holds tons of their artwork.
So, we’ll see how this goes! Hopefully Baskerville is the beginning of a rekindled WordPress relationship and a lot more Rockville Diary entries. If not, I can always go theme-shopping again.